The relative importance of rumination, experiential avoidance and mindfulness as predictors of depressive symptoms

Diana M. Schut, Paul A. Boelen

Past research has shown that rumination, experiential avoidance and mindfulness are important cognitive emotion regulation strategies in the aetiology of depressive symptoms. There is still little knowledge of their relative importance as predictors of depressive symptomology in a longitudinal design. Participants from a student-sample (N=208) completed measures of depressive symptoms, rumination, experiential avoidance and mindfulness at two assessments separated by a 12-month period. Results showed that in combination only more trait mindfulness was associated with less depressive symptoms at follow-up, even when taken into account baseline-depressive symptoms. The results suggest that trait mindfulness may be a more robust protective factor than rumination and experiential avoidance in the development of depressive symptoms over one year.

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